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Biological Anthropology

A Specialization of NC State's M.A. in Anthropology Program


Biological anthropologists study human populations and past cultures through analysis of the form and function of the human body, with an emphasis on evolutionary change over time. Our biological anthropology graduate students take courses in human osteology, bioarchaeology and skeletal biology, in addition to training in archaeology and anthropological theory relevant to their research interests.

We provide dedicated laboratory space for bioanthropological research and training, as well as a large teaching collection of skeletal remains. Graduate students may choose to construct a research project on a subject of their own choice in consultation with their advisor, or gain training and expertise in the following areas.

Areas of Study


  • Research how human skeletal remains can be used to reconstruct daily life.
  • Analyze the impact of gender differences on the lived experiences of past peoples.
  • Understand how social organization and complexity impacted human health and disease.
  • Examine how biomechanical stress from labor and activity manifests itself in the skeleton.
  • Faculty who work in this area include: Case and Wesp. Please note, Dr. Wesp will not be taking students for the 2022/2023 academic year.

Skeletal Anthropology

  • Research the impact of diet and health on size variation in the skeleton.
  • Understand how sexual dimorphism and stature are influenced by life circumstances.
  • Examine the potential of skeletal defects as indicators of genetic relationships.
  • Faculty who work in this area include: Case and Walker.


  • Email:
  • Phone: 919-513-1119
  • Please note, Dr. Wesp will not be taking students for the 2022/2023 academic year.

Additional Resources